I've been listening to these albums:
Michelle Branch is back with a her first album (since 2003!) called Hopeless Romantic and it's got a chill vibe. It wasn't an instant favorite of mine, but it grew on me. Favorite tracks: You're Good, Hopeless Romantic, Living A Lie, Carry Me Home, and Bad Side. Harry Styles debuted his solo effort and it feels like he got inspiration from a bunch of different old school British artists and made one song for each of them. It's sort of all over the place, but I don't hate it at all. Favorite tracks: Meet Me in the Hallway, Sign of the Times, Kiwi, and Woman. Paramore ditched their punk/rock roots and made After Laughter a really fun '80s, new wave, pop album. Favorite tracks: Hard Times, Forgiveness, Fake Happy, and Pool.
I've been watching these music videos:
I've never heard of Phantoms before, but I like the song Pulling Me In and think the video for it is pretty cute! Miley is back and I'm really digging her stripped-down sound and minimalist look in Malibu. I get that it's her schtick to reinvent herself with every album, but I don't mind. I've always really loved her voice too. Like I said above, Paramore has gone in an '80s direction and their video for Hard Times fits right in with their shift.
I've been reading these books:
I've been reading a lot more than just these (follow me on Goodreads), but they have been my favorite this past month. The Arrangement, about a married couple who decide to have a temporary open marriage, was quick and easy. The writing was funny and it was a thought-provoking subject for sure. All The Lives I Want is a series of essays about people she admires in the pop culture world. It's not as shallow as it seems though. While talking about celebs like Britney, Amber Rose, Anna Nicole Smith, Fiona Apple, and Lil' Kim, she also dives into mental illness, women issues, sex, and love. My favorites were about Mary-Kate and Ashley and Courtney Love. I listened to Alec Baldwin's Nevertheless because he read it, but it sort of felt like he was narrating someone else's story. There wasn't much emotion in his voice. He touches on childhood, school, career, relationships, custody battle, politics, and a few scandals he was involved in, but it doesn't go very deep. There is some cool information about the movie business though. Revolution for Dummies was surprisingly light for a book about Arab revolutions, but I think I understood so much more information about the Arab Spring because of his explanations, wit, and humor. The parallels between the corrupt Egyptian government and Trump and his followers are spot on and depressing. I wasn't expecting to like this book as much as I did!
I've been watching these new shows:
Girlboss was kind of terrible. The characters are so IN YOUR FACE and it felt very jarring. I'm dissapointed because I love Kay Cannon and actually enjoyed the book. But it's easy to watch, I enjoyed the early 2000s nostalgia, and I binged it on an overnight flight, so I guess I didn't hate it that much. Dear White People is really good! It's smart, thought-provoking, original, and relevant. It's also shot beautifully. Don't believe the negative fan reviews. There was a campaign to rate it down by, well, racist Netflix subscribers. I watched the whole season in three days. I've never read The Handmaid's Tale and was going to try before the show started, but, eh. The show is so good! I binged the first five episodes last week. It moves really slowly, which took some time to get used to, but the music (both the score and songs) is haunting and I have a huge crush on Nick (Max Minghella) so he better not turn out to be a bad guy.
I've been seeing these movies:
It's been a loooong time since I've been excited about a movie enough to see it in the theater. I took the kids to see Boss Baby over spring break. They loved it. I thought it was entertaining enough for a kids' movie. The plot went over Milo's head a little bit. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 was just fine too. I don't think it was better than the first, but it was a fun ride with good one-liners and visuals. I love Chris Pratt so much. He's one of those actors I'll see in anything.
What have you been up to?